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Beth A. Brooke

Beth A. Brooke

Beth A. Brooke is Global Vice Chair of Public Policy, Sustainability and Stakeholder Engagement at Ernst & Young and is a member of the firm’s Global Management Group and a member of its Americas Executive Board.

Well-managed chaos

The tumultuous times we lived through in the run up to 2010 are the best breeding ground and catalyst for new innovations, ideas and initiatives. Innovative and entrepreneurial juices usually flow at high speed when the country is hit with a recession.

These are the times when size can hold companies back if leaders don't manage the global diversity of their organizations to produce unusually outstanding results, achieved differently than in the past. If cost cutting wrapped up the last decade, this decade should be launched by innovation, stimulated by the friction of diversity (and not just diversity in the traditional human-resource sense).

In 2010, this is the new language of leadership, and today's leaders will benefit from learning it. Organizations forced to do more with less have a grand opportunity to do more by unleashing the collaborative and innovative power of their global work force.

Collections of empowered employees with totally different sets of human experiences can be great problem-solvers. While "polite" organizations driven by consensus might have been viewed as nice places to work, the chaos of ideas fueled by a well-managed friction of dissenting viewpoints may well produce the new products and services most needed by the world going forward.

By Beth A. Brooke

 |  January 5, 2010; 5:59 AM ET
Category:  Economic crisis Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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While I'm not sure that this entirely answers the question posed, it is absolutely right on with what is needed to move forward in this decade. Innovation stimulated by the friction of diversity.

As to what motivates people in this scenario, it is the ability to affect real change in their company. The opportunity to be heard and have a hand in moving something forward. Being engaged in their work - that's motivation enough for many people.

Thanks for your insights!

Posted by: JulieLenzerKirk | January 12, 2010 5:35 PM
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